On 20-21 March 2018, project partners met in Edinburgh to inaugurate the USER-FACTOR project. The event hosted by Scottish Enterprise combined the first Steering Committee Meeting and Knowledge exchange workshop on Good Practices in Design Support. Having looked at the European policy for design and research on design support, each partner presented a successful case of a design innovation support mechanism from their regions. These examples will be turned into case studies that will form part of a handbook of good practices. We also discussed the critical success factors and potential within these programmes as the first step to developing the Design Pilot. At the next meeting in October in Dublin we will start planning our pilots in details.
Dr Anna Whicher, manager of the project, emphasised project’s focus on long-term effects:
“By using design methods in our knowledge exchange process, we will build capacity within the innovation agencies so that they can offer design support beyond the funding period. Having design integrated more widely in business support, we can expect SMEs to become more profitable and grow faster thanks to development of products and services that are more desirable and sustainable.”